Bauxite mining in Cockpit Country, Jamaica


Description

Bauxite is the source mineral of aluminium. In Jamaica, ALCOA (Aluminum Company of America), the largest producer of aluminum in the world, has been mining bauxite since 1963, converting Jamaica in the sixth largest bauxite producer in the world, right after Australia, Guinea, Brazil, China and India.

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Basic Data
NameBauxite mining in Cockpit Country, Jamaica
CountryJamaica
ProvinceCockpit Country
SiteTrelawny Parish
Accuracy of LocationMEDIUM regional level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Mineral Ores and Building Materials Extraction
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Water access rights and entitlements
Metal refineries
Mineral processing
Other industries
Specific CommoditiesAluminum/Bauxite
Land
silica and limestone
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsA licence granted to Alcoa Minerals of Jamaica to prospect bauxite in the parished of Trelawny and St. Ann ( about 51 000 ha).

Jamaica's alumina capacity is approximately three million tons per year.
Project Area (in hectares)51000
Level of Investment (in USD)unknown
Type of PopulationRural
Potential Affected Population75 000
Start Date04/08/2005
Company Names or State EnterprisesAlcoa from United States of America
Alcoa Minerals of Jamaica from United States of America - concessionaire
Clarendon Alumina Production from Jamaica
Relevant government actorsJamaica Bauxite Institute, Ministry of Agriculture and Lands, Government of Jamaica.
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersCockpit Country Stakeholders' Group (CCSG), Southern Trelawny Environmental Agency (STEA), Windsor Research Centre (WRC), University of the West Indies (UWI), International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Jamaica Environmental Advocacy Network (JEAN).
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)LOW (some local organising)
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingIndigenous groups or traditional communities
International ejos
Local ejos
Local government/political parties
Social movements
Ethnically/racially discriminated groups
Local scientists/professionals
Maroon community
Forms of MobilizationCreation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of a network/collective action
Development of alternative proposals
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Media based activism/alternative media
Objections to the EIA
Official complaint letters and petitions
Public campaigns
Street protest/marches
Arguments for the rights of mother nature
Refusal of compensation
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Food insecurity (crop damage), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity
Potential: Desertification/Drought, Soil erosion, Mine tailing spills
OtherLoss of endemic species
Health ImpactsVisible: Mental problems including stress, depression and suicide
Potential: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)
Socio-economic ImpactsVisible: Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Specific impacts on women, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place, Other socio-economic impacts, Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment
Potential: Increase in violence and crime
Outcome
Project StatusProposed (exploration phase)
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseLand demarcation
Court decision (undecided)
Strengthening of participation
Project temporarily suspended
Development of AlternativesSustainable and long-term economic projects such as butterfly ranch and zoo, organic agriculture, hemp product development, water production, essential oils and neutraceuticals, bamboo for housing, planting yam and other crops, ecological and cultural tourism.
Do you consider this as a success?Yes
Why? Explain briefly.The Jamaica government backed away from offering licenses for bauxite mining in the Cockpit Country region after protests from environmentalists and maroons.
Sources and Materials
Legislations

Prospecting Licence #SEPL 535 granted to ALCOA Minerals of Jamaica in 2004
[click to view]

References

Defining the Boundaries of The Cockpit Country. Final Report 9 th October 2008. University Of West Indies
[click to view]

Links

BBC Caribean (2007) Maroons vow to protect lands
[click to view]

Southern Trelawny Environmental Agency, Cockpit Country vs. Bauxite. From the Editor
[click to view]

The Gleaner (2013). Inside The Cockpit Country - Maroons, Conservationists Say No To Bauxite, Limestone Mining
[click to view]

Environment News Service (2006) Bauxite Mine Fight Looms in Jamaica's Cockpit Country
[click to view]

Bauxite Mine Fight Looms in Jamaica's Cockpit Country (2006)
[click to view]

Lodos rojos de minería de bauxita, deforestación y tragedias socioambientales (2010)
[click to view]

Ambiente-Jamaica. Interpress Services
[click to view]

The Cockpit Country of Jamaica and the Threats Posed by Bauxite Mining (2013)
[click to view]

Media Links

Cockpit Country - Voices from Jamaica's Heart
[click to view]

Save Cockpit Country public campaign
[click to view]

Other Documents

Public Campaing
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorGrettel Navas, Fundación Neotrópica
Last update10/12/2014
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